Frequently Asked Questions

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BFA Admissions 
Community Education
Financial Aid 
Student Activities/Resources
Tuition and Payments

BFA Admissions

Is NHIA accredited?
NHIA is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).  New Hampshire’s Department of Education also approves the Art Education Certification Program. 

Is NHIA a member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD)?
NHIA is a member of AICAD.  Benefits to students include the opportunity to participate in the New York Studio Residency Program and in AICAD’s AICAD Mobility Program

What is NHIA’s application deadline?
NHIA has a rolling admissions policy. Applications are accepted throughout the year for both Spring and Fall Semesters as space remains available.  International applicants are encouraged to complete the application process by May 1, 2016 for Fall 2016 semester and October 1, 2016 for Spring 2017 semester.

Does NHIA have an Early Action deadline for Fall 2016?

NHIA has an Early Action deadline of January 15, 2016 for high school seniors who have chosen NHIA as their first choice school.  This is a non-binding decision which enables students to take part in early registration and housing selection.

What do I need for my portfolio?
NHIA portfolio requirements can be found under Application Information.  Portfolio reviews and/or campus tours can be scheduled by contacting us at or 866-241-4918 x589.

Are transfer credits accepted?
NHIA accepts transfer credits. Credits are reviewed and accepted on an individual basis.

Are AP credits accepted?

NHIA offers credit to students who have earned Advanced Placement scores of four or five for elective studio or liberal arts credit. 

How many students are in the Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) program?
We have about 427 BFA students currently enrolled.

What is the gender distribution?
64% female, 36% male

What is your student to teacher ratio?
11 to 1

Where is the campus?
Our main campus is located in Manchester, NH, the state's largest city of about 109,000.  Boston, New England seacoast, and the Lakes Region are all within an hour's drive. Manchester is also home to the world-class Currier Museum of Art, historic Palace Theatre, and the Verizon Wireless Arena. Just a few miles from campus is Lake Massabesic which offers miles of mountain biking and hiking trails, kayaking, fishing, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.

Will an admission counselor come to my school?
Admission Counselors visit high schools throughout the academic year. Contact the Admissions office to request a visit to your school. 

What kind of computer should I buy?
NHIA does not require students to purchase computers, however, if you plan on purchasing a computer, we recommend a MAC. Most students prefer a laptop and are used mostly for internet research and communication as well as writing papers.  Please note that NHIA provides all incoming freshmen students with their own Mac PowerBook laptop computer complete with Adobe Creative Suite and Microsoft Office 365 software at no additional charge!

Is there campus parking available to students?
NHIA campus offers a variety of parking lots for faculty, students and staff. Students must obtain a parking sticker once every year. Please note that this sticker does not guarantee parking in NHIA lots, it is used for monitoring purposes only.

Where can a student get a job while on campus?
A variety of student jobs are available on campus, either through the Work Study program or through departmental job opportunities. Work Study positions are managed by the Financial Aid Office. Departmental job opportunities are sent via email to the student population.

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Community Education

Where do I find the CE Course Schedule online?
To download the course schedule go to Programs and click Community Education. The Course Schedule is available on the Community Education landing page.

Where do I find the Certificate Catalog online?
To download a Certificate Catalog go to Programs and click on Certificate Program. The catalog and application form can be found on the Certificate Program landing page.

How can I receive more information about Community Education and/or the Certificate Program?
You may request more information by clicking on Community Education or Certificate Program and completing an Request More Information form. Or, you may call 603-836-2515 to be added to the mailing list.

Both programs can be found by going to Programs on our homepage. Click on the program you are interested in and download a copy of the most recent brochure and registration form.

Where do I get a transcript?
You may request a transcript by contacting the Registrar. 

Why can't we register online?
Registration online is currently unavailable at this time. We are working to include online Continuing Education and Certificate registration. Stay tuned!

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Financial Aid

How to apply for financial aid?
Visit and complete the online form. This is a free application for federal financial aid.

Does NHIA offer scholarships?

NHIA offers significant merit-based scholarships and need-based grants to new and returning students. Merit scholarships are awarded to students based on the strength of their application for admission, including their portfolio and academic record.  Merit scholarships are awarded upon acceptance.  All applicants are encouraged to complete the FAFSA by March 1 for full consideration of their need-based financial aid. Need based NHIA grants are awarded later in March/early April.  

How do I apply for institutional scholarships?
Students who apply for admission to the Institute are automatically considered for all merit scholarships for which they may be eligible. Need-based scholarship eligibility is based on results from the FAFSA application. Returning students may be considered for merit scholarships after March 1st each year. Students are notified of the application process through campus email.

How long will it take to determine my eligibility?
Financial aid can take several weeks to process. Be sure to supply any requested documents (taxes, household information) in a timely manner.

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Can my friend and I request to be roommates?
Absolutely. If two students know that they want to be roommates, they must both indicate this on the housing deposit form. Roommates, however, are required to be of the same gender. Please direct any questions to the Director of Residence Life.

What happens if my roommate and I aren't compatible?
Roommate conflicts can be stressful and evolve around many issues. When conflicts cannot be resolved between the disagreeing parties, the Residence Life staff can help mediate. Resident Assistants, Resident Directors and the Director of Residence Life - can serve as mediators and help create an environment in which all parties can express the disagreement and work jointly to resolve the issue.

Can I have a fridge in my room?
Yes, you may but only refrigerators 35 inches in height (or less) and drawing no more than 1.5 amps of power are allowed.

Can I have a pet?
Pets of any kind are not allowed on campus.

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Student Activities/Resources

What is there to do in Manchester?
There are many local restaurants, coffee shops, theaters, music venues, parks, and entertainment venues in the downtown area along with the Verizon Wireless Arena which hosts concerts and shows. In addition, Manchester has a fairly large mall. Many students take pleasure in bowling, student events, going to the movies, and other various student run activities on campus. 

What happens at NHIA on the weekends? Do most resident students stay on campus?
Many resident students stay here for the weekend, either to participate in activities and events on campus, work in the studios or to explore and enjoy downtown Manchester. There's a wide variety of restaurants, a performance theater within walking distance and public transportation to the mall.

As a freshman, do I have to live on campus?
Freshmen and sophomores are required to live on campus.

Do I need to bring a computer with me?
No.  Students don't need to bring computers to campus. Generally, full-time students who have earned at least 30 credits are eligible for our laptop program.  Additionally, NHIA has a number of computer labs that students can access during the day and evening. Also, computers can be found in other areas outside of the lab, such as the library and writing studio.

Can freshmen have cars?
Parking is a universal issue for all institutions. Parking is limited and is available on a first come first served basis in all three parking lots. Because parking is limited we strongly discourage students to bring their cars. Our priority in regards to parking is to be able to award parking spots on campus for commuters, faculty and staff.

How safe is the campus?
NHIA is a safe campus. There is a Shuttle service available to all students in the evenings, which students can access at any residence hall or academic building. Access to the residence halls and other campus facilities are controlled by a keycard access system. All residence halls are monitored in the evenings by the Resident Assistants or Resident Directors.

What student groups and/or activities are available?
There are many different groups on campus. The Gaming Club meets weekly to play different board, card, video and miniature games. You could join the Recycling Committee to help the Institute be green, or join Student Leadership Committee to help create, plan and host numerous activities throughout the year. These activities include Concerts, Poetry Nights, Dances, Student Sales and our annual showing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. If you didn't see a group that you wanted to join then you can start your own. The process is very easy; just stop by the Student Affairs Department to get started.

How does a student get home after a late night in the studios?
You may hop aboard the NHIA Shuttle, which makes nightly runs to each academic building and residence hall. Or, you may hoof it to your final destination, as each building is within a three-block radius in downtown Manchester.

What happens if I get sick?
NHIA does not operate a Health Clinic on campus, but has established relationships with a number of local health care providers.  There is also a nurse available three days a week with limited hours. When a student has a problem, they can contact the Student Affairs Department who will suggest health care providers in the area. Please refer to the student handbook; there the students will be able to contact the providers directly.

What accommodations do you have for students with special needs?
It is the policy of the NHIA to make every effort, when possible and practical, to accommodate the needs of students with documented disabilities. If you have a special need, please contact the Academic Support Center.

What travel abroad opportunities are there?
NHIA is committed to providing the opportunity for students to study abroad during their four years as an undergraduate. NHIA is able to offer several excellent opportunities through accredited colleges that include programs in Italy, France, Greece, and England. Information is also available on the many summer study abroad programs as well. Please contact the Academic Affairs Department for additional information.

Are there opportunities for community service?
Yes. There are a variety of volunteer opportunities available to all students. At NHIA we encourage students to participate in community service projects. Many students become involved on and off-campus through programs such as the Recycling Committee and Student Council.

Where can a student get a job while on campus?
A variety of student jobs are available on campus, through the Work Study program which are managed by Career Services

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Tuition and Payments

How much is full time tuition?
Tuition for the 2015-16 academic year is $23,490 without applied fees or residential cost. A student is considered full time when he/she enrolls in 12 or more credits.

How much is part time tuition?
Part-time tuition is based on the number of course credits for which the student is enrolled. The 2015-16 3-credit course cost is $3,285 without applied fees. A student should consult with the Admissions Office or their Advisor to determine the number of courses per semester that best suites their educational goals.

What are the fees?
Registration: This is a flat fee assessed each semester when a student enrolls in a course(s). It covers the cost to process the student's registration in his/her classes.

Student Activity: This is a flat fee assessed each semester to all enrolled students. It covers the cost of activities made available to him/her during the semester.

Technology Fee: This is a flat fee assessed each semester when a student enrolls in a course(s). This covers the access and usage of library online resources, computer labs, wireless access and other technology related campus items.

Supplemental Lab Fee: This is a flat fee assessed to Illustration and Photography concentration students because of the additional lab time required to complete their courses.

Studio Fee: This is a fee assessed each semester when a student enrolls in a course(s). This fee covers the cost for models, easels, clay, firing, etc. Full time students are assessed a flat fee, part time students are assessed a fee for each studio class they are attending.

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Housing: This is a fee assessed each semester to students who reside in the dorm.

Housing Damage Deposit: This is a flat fee assessed only once during the academic year to residential students. NHIA holds these funds until the end of the academic year. Any damages to campus property found to be the responsibility of the student will be deducted from the deposit and the balance is mailed to the student.

Health Insurance: Full time students are required to have health insurance coverage. NHIA has contracted with an outside source to provide health insurance. Full time students will be automatically assessed a fee for the health insurance. Students must complete a Health Insurance Selection Card indicating if they will or will not participate in the group plan and return it to the Institute by the stated deadline to waive the fee. A student who fails to return the card by the stated deadline will be responsible to pay the charge. Part time students, spouses and children of students may purchase insurance.

What happens to my Enrollment & Housing Deposit?
The Admission Department collects a $200 Enrollment Deposit from newly accepted BFA students. Admissions and Student Affairs also collect a $200 Housing Deposit from new and returning students who will reside in dorms for the upcoming semester. NHIA holds these funds until the charges are assessed. The funds are then transferred to the student's account to offset their charges.

When will I receive my bill - Student Statement?
The student's bill (Student Statement) is mailed to the student as soon as the charges are assessed. Payment is due by the date indicated on the top right side of the statement.

How do I read my Student Statement?
The statement will list the charges assessed to the student. The enrollment and housing deposit will be deducted. Any payments received will also be deducted. The student's financial aid package (scholarships and loans) will be listed below. If the amount is considered VERIFIED, it will be subtracted from the Amount Due on the bottom right side of the statement. If the amount is considered PENDING, it will not be subtracted from the Amount Due.

Why is the statement in the Student's name rather than the parent? Who is responsible for the bill?
The student is responsible for their educational expenses; therefore, statements are mailed to the student. Due to FERPA Regulation (Family Education Rights & Privacy Act) NHIA is unable to discuss the student's financial information to a third party unless the student has provided authorization.

How do I pay?
NHIA accepts payment by cash, check, and credit card for the amount not covered by financial aid.

Does the Institute have a payment plan?
NHIA has also partnered with Tuition Management Systems (TMS) to provide the student/parent with the option to make payments through a payment plan. A ten-month plan (July - April) and a 9-month plan (August - April) are offered for the full academic year. A five-month plan is offered for a single semester, July - November (fall semester) & December - April (spring semester). A twelve-month plan is also offered for re-enrolling TMS Payment Plan students.

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The Amount Due on the Student Statement is a credit balance. Why can't I have the money now?
A Student Statement will indicate the amount of financial aid a student will be receiving for the semester. If the amount is considered VERIFIED, it will be subtracted from the Amount Due on the bottom right side of the statement and may create a credit balance. When the Institute receives the funds, a check will be sent to the student or parent within 14 days of posting.

Can I leave excess financial aid funds on my account to be applied to the next semester?
In order to comply with federal regulations, NHIA is required to make any excess financial aid available to a student in a timely manner. NHIA can only apply excess funds to the next semester if the student provides written authorization to the Bursar's Office.

What happens if I withdraw from a course or from NHIA?
If a student withdraws from a course or courses but is still enrolled in 12 credits to 15 credits, there is no change in the students' charges. If a full- or part-time student withdraws from a course or courses and he/she is enrolled for less than 12 credits, the charges will be adjusted according to NHIA's refund policy.

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